Metaverse: Virtual West End

Virtual West End for cyber shoppers
The imaginary worlds of Sim City, Second Life and other digital utopias are about to be joined by a very different online experience – shopping in London’s West End. An ambitious new scheme to duplicate online the real-life experience of a shopping expedition in central London is promising to transform the way Britain’s leading retailers do business. Stung by the growing popularity of internet shopping – online sales in November were up 16% on last year – the body representing West End traders is creating a unique internet world where shoppers will be able to wander down computer simulations of London streets, click their way into exact replicas of well-known stores, and thumb through goods stacked on virtual shelves.

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